with his 18" brass Chinese 'tam-tam' or gong, for the Musicians' Portrait Project.
Michael Perry is the son of veteran character actor and narrator, Frank Perry, who, until his death in 2009, had worked in radio, television and films for over 60 years. Michael was born and raised in a showbiz family, in Toronto. After early training in piano and music theory, he concentrated on percussion exclusively. His studies include work with: Alexander Lepak (with The National Youth Orchestra of Canada, 1976 and 1977), Stan Perry (in The Jazz Program at the Banff Centre, 1979), and Russell Hartenberger of Nexus (at the University of Toronto, from 1976 to 1980.) Michael holds a Bachelor of Music in Performance degree from the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto.
Since entering the music profession, Michael has been active as a drummer, percussionist and timpanist in a career that spans more than 30 years. He feels at home in all musical genres: pop, jazz, symphonic music, studio recording, ballet, opera and musical theatre. He has participated in numerous radio and television broadcasts as well as CD recordings, particularly with the Hannaford Street Silver Band and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra.
The list of artists with whom Michael has performed includes: Joel Grey, Joan Rivers, Phil Nimmons, and Placido Domingo. He has also performed with the Bolshoi Ballet, The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, Nexus, The Mainly Mozart Orchestra, Tafelmusik, The Toronto Operetta, New Music Concerts, Les Grandes Ballets Canadiens, The CJRT Orchestra, The Canada Pops Orchestra, and The Toronto Percussion Ensemble (of which he is a co-founder.)
Michael has toured extensively throughout Canada, the United States and Europe with the National Ballet of Canada, and has performed with the spring and summer Festivals in Elora, Parry Sound, Huntsville, Sharon, Quinte, Artpark, Palm Beach and Guelph.
Michael held the position of Principal Percussion with the Hannaford Street Silver Band for 25 years. He is currently the Principal Timpanist with The National Ballet of Canada Orchestra -- a position he has held since 1981 -- and, since 1994, the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra.
Find an image of Michael and his timps here.